Mum is the stage play that the late Ronnie Barker was tempted out of retirement to write for his daughter – a tragi-comedy revealing a hidden, darker side to the much-loved comedian.
Written under the pseudonym "Richard Mervyn", this play offers a rare insight into the hidden side of Ronnie Barker. It is his only stage play and he had been retired from comedy for 10 years when he decided to create a new work for his actress daughter, Charlotte.
The play features the hallmark Barker love for the rhythm of words and comedy born of keen observation of everyday life, but tragedy and a sense of loss and longing are concerns which rarely had the chance to surface in his writing for television.
Alison is alone in her drab London flat. She is a country girl trying to make sense of a life that has taken from her not just her mother but also her father and boyfriend. In her mind, she still talks to her dead mother, telling her every detail of her predictable and dull days. But when she decides to spice up her confession with a very big secret, it's the men in her life who materialise before her. Their stories reveal some shocking truths and, having had nothing in her life to look forward to, suddenly the future for Alison becomes alarmingly clear.
Mum is adapted for radio and directed by Neil Cargill. At the time of going to press, cast members are to be confirmed.